Do you want to know how to get the most out of your island adventure in Santorini?
Take a day trip by boat.
Our boat picked us up from the port of Fira and glided through the Aegen Sea so that we could get the best view of the Caldera from the water.
We were then transported to the active volcano that is known as Nea Kameni. At the volcano, we were guided through uphill paths that lead us to the top of the volcano. It was wonderful to see the views of the Caldera from the top of a volcano!
After spending 2 hours walking up and down the volcano, we arrived back on the ship just in the nick of time. I was surprised at how I was able to walk the rough terrane with just a pair of flip-flops!
The Hot Springs
As the ship veered around the volcano, the extremely athletic sailors anchored the ship at Palia Kameni where the hot springs were located. We were told that we had to swim at least 25 metres to the hot springs, which resembled a small bay of water that had turned orange from the minerals.
At first, I was too afraid. The water was deep and I did not know what lurked beneath. My husband offered to wait with me while the rest of the tour group jumped into the water. I watched them as they started to swim to the hot springs and convinced hubby to join them. He took a big leap into the water and beckoned for me to join him.
I pondered and pondered.
“I’ll never be here ever again, so just do it”, I thought to myself.
So that is what I did. I am not a strong swimmer so I took the tour leader’s advice to take a life jacket. I can swim for short distances, but when swimming in deep water I forget my survival instincts, so I knew that it would be difficult without the life jacket. I was the only adult wearing a life jacket but I did not care. I swam as far as my legs could take me until I reached the orange water. It was such an achievement.
The water was a few degrees warmer than the rest of the ocean so it did not resemble my idea of hot springs. However, I was enjoying the fact that I had swam 25 metres in the ocean despite my fear of deep water. I didn’t panic and I had kept my eye on the prize. We swam around the hot springs and lathered ourselves with orange coloured mud. It was such an amazing feeling and I am glad that I did not let my fear take over.
The Bay Area
After we had enjoyed a swim at the hot springs, the boat continued to the next destination called Athinios. This is where the crew anchored the boat so that they could prepare our supper.
We were allowed to swim in the bay and I even considered not wearing a life jacket. Then I realised that I would have way more fun if I didn’t have to worry about floating. So, I asked for a life jacket and I swam in the crystal, blue waters of the Athinios bay. The water was so clear that I would move my arms underneath and I could see them as if they were under a glass table. I could see tiny little fish that were curiously swimming towards me. They were probably wondering why this big orange object was flapping about in their home!
I felt such a rush of excitement when swimming in that bay. It was the first time that I truly did not fear the thought of swimming in deep water. The first time that I could swim around and not worry about what was underneath.
Dinner on the Boat
When the bell rang on the boat, we knew that it was time for dinner. The crew provided us with a delicious arrangement of mezes which included fresh bread and an assortment of dips, pastries, breaded meats, sausages and meatballs. We gobbled the food up pretty quickly and enjoyed the view in the meantime!
Then, as the sun was starting to set, the crew ran throughout the length of the ship to release the sails.
The ship continued to manoeuvre its way through the water so that we gained a 360 view of the surrounding area. We waved to village of Fira, the village of Oia, the volcano and finally looked ahead to watch the sun set. We were serenaded by a saxophone as the sun slowly descended and disappeared under the horizon.
Such an amazing experience and one that we will remember for the rest of our lives!
What was your favourite experience by boat? Comment below and let me know!
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— Christine (@part_of_myworld) July 8, 2013
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